There is clearly a difference between me playing an MMORPG… well, I will say “seriously” for lack of a better word… and me going back to play one for the sake of my annual autumnal nostalgia drive.
In the so-called serious mode, it can be a somewhat OCD-like drive to see and experience the world, to chase down the last quest in a zone, to peek into every corner, run dungeons, fight in events, and so on and so forth. And a key aspect to this is that the world must resist my efforts. If things are too easy, I will lose interest. I should not be able to do everything correctly on the first try every single time.
In fact, I think making things too hard is better than making things too easy, at least to a certain point. Walking out into a the world only to be insta-killed by the first set of mobs is turning the knob too far for most games. And I am not sure how soon you want to transition over from learning how to play the game to the game making things difficult.
In my experiences on the Emerald Dream server, for example, I replayed how WoW used to turn from the playing slaying easy, non-aggro mobs in Elwynn Forest to facing packs of Defias with overlapping aggro zones in the vineyard in one very short step.
But in nostalgia mode, I am not interested in a lot of such thing. I am not interested in grinding my way through a zone’s storyline, I do not want to work hard. I want to run around, visit interesting places, and kill the local boss.
In this, I think EverQuest II might be perfectly arranged for me.
It helps that I left myself a character perfectly setup for a nostalgia tour. I cannot remember if I did this on purpose or not, but my barbarian berserker Sigwerd hit level 42, at which point I outfitted him with a full set of master crafted gear… that probably translates to very good blue items or base level purple in the WoW scale of things… upgraded all his skills, and then parked him.
So, when I did come back to roam I had the maximum amount of time to run around before running into to the “you must completely replace all your equipment every 10 levels” barrier. Add in mercenaries so I can hire a healer and become pretty much invincible to heroic named encounters, and I was set.
So, I ran around visiting places, slaying named mobs, and wrapping up the occasional quest. The slaying named mobs seemed to be helped by the fact that named mobs seem to be up a lot more frequently. Or less people are out there slaying them.
And, like all tourists, I took a series of pictures along the way. I posted some previously, but here are some more.
Of course, some came out blurry. And the JPEG compression is pretty harsh. And half the time I forgot to take a picture. Such a tourist.
Now though Sigwerd has hit level 52. And while I was able to harvest enough rares to re-equip him for another 10 level jaunt, I am wondering where he should head next. What should be on the tourist map for 53-62 in EverQuest II?